Community Raises Money for Funeral of Slain Fairhope Teenager

Credit: Ashley Brooke Photography


Fairhope, AL (WKRG)

Coworkers, friends, and family are dedicating a day to the memory of Lauren Wright.  Pinzone’s Italian Downtown hosted an all-day fundraiser from 11:30 a.m. until close Tuesday.  Wright worked there for the last 13 months but in that time she became a member of the family according to several of the people who worked with her.

Anyone who has worked in a restaurant has rolled countless pieces of silverware, but employees at Pinzone’s say Lauren Wright was one of a kind.

“She made an impression on me very quickly,” said Hunter Hough.  “She’s very caring and always in a good mood. And one of my favorite employees, definitely.”

In the short time Wright worked at Pinzone’s, she became a member of the family.  Lauren’s quirks at work included mismatched socks, and putting a flour handprint on the black uniform shirts of her coworkers.  On Tuesday, employees wore blue shirts with white handprints in her memory.

“Dear God, I hope that kitchen in the sky is covered in flour, and I bet they have never tasted a better pizza,” said restaurant owner Shelby Nelson as she led a small prayer between singing songs in tribute.

Like the flour handprints and mismatched socks, Lauren’s family hopes her pride in individuality can be mirrored and celebrated for years to come.

“Embrace whatever it is that they love, whether it’s Harry Potter, or Starwars, or fishing, or hunting,” Celeste Champion, Lauren’s aunt said when asked what she hopes the community can learn from Lauren’s legacy.  “Whatever it is that really, makes someone really happy… then that’s what Lauren would say, ‘Dude, that’s your thing.'”

“Everything she touched turned to gold. There was nothing that baby couldn’t do,” said Nelson. “She was the most beautiful human being you could have ever met and she loved everybody all the time.”  Wright was killed in a shooting in the Demopolis area early Saturday morning.  An arrest has been made but police offered few details surrounding how and why the incident happened.

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